Posted by Julie • February 25, 2022 • 4 min read
At Trakstar, we’ve been talking about expectation setting and how to align our teams and company overall.
This year, I thought it might be helpful to outline what we expect from our employees as a remote company – because here we are. And, being 100% remote is different from what we’ve been in the past. It looks as if remote will be “us” for 2022, and likely beyond.
Here’s a note I sent to all employees. It’s intended to empower everyone to know what “good” looks like, and empower managers with a backdrop for organizational expectations that cross departmental lines.
As we enter 2022 and add new people to our teams, I am excited for what is ahead of us. At the same time, it’s important to acknowledge the complicated world we are living in and the many things we are balancing right now.
While things have certainly changed in the workplace, we are uniquely positioned for 2022. To empower our anticipated success, I would like to take a moment to communicate expectations going into the new year.
Zoom Calls: Collaboration is an important part of the work we do, and much of that work occurs on Zoom. It is an expectation that your camera is on during calls. We’ve embraced a remote culture, and face-to-face interaction strengthens our communications together. Having video on allows others to feel this connection and gain additional insight from facial expressions and visual cues – rounding out the conversation. Certainly, there will be moments where video-on is not ideal (slow connection, etc). In these cases, feel free to turn off your video and give your teammates a heads up as to why. Video on should be the norm.
Communication: Slack is a great place to interact with others company-wide. It is an expectation that you are available during regular business hours for your time zone and reply promptly. If you are tagged in a conversation, please acknowledge the note with an emoji, so we know you have read the message.
Work hours: Employees should work their established work hours, but there are of course exceptions. It is an expectation that every attempt be made to be available as expected, or use the PTO policy to make exceptions when needed. We choose these hours to serve our customers, and to have overlap with one another for collaboration.
PTO: We have an open PTO policy that allows employees the flexibility to take time off for vacations and sick days from a single pool of time. It is an expectation that all employees will use PTO with discretion. This policy is not “unlimited,” rather, it is “open.” On average, our employees take about 20 days off per year. All employees are expected to be strong contributors to their teams and this includes being present and ensuring coverage when out.
Working Outside Trakstar: Outside work (second jobs, consulting arrangements, and the like must be approved by HR and the CEO). It is an expectation that outside work is free from potential conflicts of interest, and honors the commitment we make to one another that Trakstar is our primary responsibility. This applies to employment that you currently hold or any additional work you take on in the future.
Company and Customer Confidential Information: Trakstar data, our company’s metrics, financials, and strategy, are intended for us internally to advance our ability to grow and serve our customers. It is an expectation that you take discretion with all company and customer information. Customer information is sensitive and should be protected with care, according to our security policies and Customer Agreements. If you have questions about what we can share, please ask a member of our Leadership team who will be pleased to work through any unique situations with you.
Thank you. I’m sure these reminders are just that – and I hope they are helpful as we begin 2022.
Expectation setting letters help your employees see, in writing, just want you want from them as a leader. It is your way to get a fresh start when you think things need to be changed or your culture has some aspects that aren’t sitting well with you.
It can also be a great way to set the scene for a period of growth.
Expectation letters don’t have to be longer letters like the one above, although that can help add some seriousness to them. It helps to be clear, concise, structured, and formal in your communications here, but you don’t have to wait until you have a “few” expectations to organize.
We sent this letter at the start of the quarter to help align our teams and keep everyone on the same page.
Struggling with setting expectations? It’s difficult to do in organizations of any size, but particularly when you have a large workforce and only a few people monitoring employee behavior. Having a platform that naturally guides your employees through the employee lifecycle, encouraging ongoing education and training while regularly checking engagement and setting goals can help make expectation setting easier, clearer, and more impactful than ever before.
To learn more about the Trakstar Platform and how it can fit into your day-to-day expectation setting, schedule a demo today.